"A Good Mexican"
Santa Anna's death marked the passing of an era. He was born when Mexico was still a colony. He was buried at the end of the midcentury watershed, as a triumphant and long-lasting liberal order was about to become firmly consolidated under the rule of General Porfirio Díaz (1876–1910). He was born into a period when a Spanish viceroy sat in Mexico City, obeying orders from Madrid, and died in one in which Mexico was an independent republic that had boasted a Zapotec president and was governed according to a radical liberal constitution. During Santa Anna's lifetime Mexico had become independent from Spain, and its political class had experimented with four different constitutions (1824, 1836, 1843, and 1857), two empires (1822–23 and 1864–67), and a number of dictatorial spells. Numerous civil conflicts had marked the passing of time. Mexico had been forced to fight four international wars and had been occupied by invading armies on two occasions. Mexico had also lost half of its territory to the United States. Astonishingly, Santa Anna had witnessed and participated in most of these events.
During his wake, from two in the afternoon on 21 June 1876 to nine in the morning on the 22nd, over eight thousand people paid their last respects to the caudillo as he lay in an open coffin in his widow's house on the Calle Vergara. His body was then transported to Guadalupe Hidalgo to be buried, and a procession of over forty carriages accompanied him on his last journey. The funeral oration was delivered by General Santiago Blanco, a veteran of the battles of Angostura–Buena Vista and Padierna, who had served in the Ministry of War during Santa